Sara Constantino

I am an interdisciplinary social scientist, currently based at the Center for Policy Research on Energy and the Environment (C-PREE) at the School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University, where I collaborate with various centers, schools and institutes, including the Andlinger Center for Energy and the Environment and the High Meadows Environmental Institute. My research sits at the intersection of behavioral economics, judgment and decision-making, political ecology and social and environmental policy. I work with cross-disciplinary teams to better understand how individuals embedded in social-ecological systems respond to changes in their environments, and how we can build community resilience to social and environmental shocks. In this work, I am especially interested in understanding the dynamics between individual decisions and their social spheres.

In parallel work, I study the political economy of cash transfer programs and pilots, with a focus on shifting public attitudes towards cash assistance. As part of this work, I designed and am evaluating the impacts of the largest municipal cash transfer program in the United States in collaboration with researchers at New York University, The University of Stockholm, and the Jain Family Institute, in close collaboration with the City of Compton and the Mayors for a Guaranteed Income.

Current research interests include:

• Social norms and social tipping dynamics

• Multi-level governance and urban sustainability

• Energy transformations, and community solar

• Cash transfer programs, time-use and psychological and financial wellbeing

Current research projects and affiliations include:

Behavioral Science for Policy Lab, focused on understanding how cognition is embedded in social and ecological environments, and the implications for policy.

Rapid Switch Project, an international collaboration focused on identifying viable pathways to decarbonization in Australia, China, India and the United States.

Earth Resilience and Sustainability Initiative, a new collaboration between Princeton, the Stockholm Resilience Center, and the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research.

Compton Pledge, the largest municipal guaranteed income pilot in the United States, which launched in March 2021.